Folks, I was writing this week’s MacTip from my home in Wellington, New Zealand when news came through of a massive 6.3 earthquake in Christchurch, some 300 Kilometers (190 miles) to the south.
Here in Wellington we’re fine, but many of my own friends and family members are in Christchurch. New Zealand is a fairly small country and the whole nation has been affected by this disaster.
I was simply unable to continue with the Tip, and in the grand scheme of things it all seemed rather trivial.
It was less than 6 months ago that Christchurch suffered a 7.1 earthquake, but this one has been much more devastating. The previous quake’s epicentre was deeper, a little further away and the quake struck in the middle of the night when most people were at home.
This one struck at lunchtime. The epicentre was only 5 Km deep and around 10 Km from the city centre.
Now, some 6 hours later it has been confirmed that 65 people are dead, many are injured and many more are not yet accounted for.
This is a huge blow to the people of Canterbury, and to the country as a whole.
If you’d like to, please make a donation to the New Zealand Red Cross.
Update, Monday, 28 February 2011: It’s now almost a week since the earthquake struck and we’re only starting to realise how utterly disrupted our lives are. In Christchurch 148 people have been officially declared dead, while more are still missing — the search and recovery efforts continue. All schools are closed until further notice. The central city is still cordoned off and perhaps 750 buildings in the Central Business District may need to be torn down. Check any New Zealand news source for more information about the devastation and recovery.